December 1, 2011: Jamaicans now has a challenging opportunity to exploit its potential to serve the billion dollar US business process outsourcing industry. The charge was set by Senator Arthur Williams, Minister in charge of Information and the public service, during the 2nd Annual Awards and Scholarships Gala of the Jamaican American Bar Association. During the talk he said that the government plans to come up with a five-point plan to support the BPO sector growth in Jamaica.
The plan is to double the job opportunities that the sector currently provides and to improve the global competitiveness of the BPO industry. The Caribbean and the Latin American market is valued at USD 2.5 billion and the USD 145 million worth Jamaican market contributes 6 per cent to this.
The BPO industry in the country now has 26 service providers which provide about 11,000 full time jobs. The government now plans to attract significant investment to this sector to remain competitive. In order to remain competitive, the BPO industry must grow at a compounded rate between 20 and 21 per cent annually over the next 4 to 5 years, based on estimates.
BPO industry provides services which ranges from sales to technical support different areas including healthcare, financial services, logistics management, etc. The global spending on outsourcing was USD 460 billion during 2007 and is projected to increase to USD 680 billion at the end of 2011. Based on the information from the International Data Corporation (IDC), the global BPO industry is expected to grow at a rate of 9 per cent and will be worth USD 1 trillion within 3 years.
The five-point plan which is set to drive the expansion of the industry will concentrate on targeting and segmenting the clients, building infrastructure, regulatory frame work to stimulate and protect the industry, meeting the training needs of the sector through a cost effective approach and financial assistance to the sector.
Moreover the government plans to reform the tax system to reduce the distortion, remove inefficiencies, and stimulate growth. The reforms will reduce the complexity of the tax system, broaden the tax base and enhance quality, by means of rational tax waivers, exemptions and incentives.
The minister says that economic reforms targeted over a long period of time have been put in place with the assistance from different partners which will act as a foundation for lasting growth. He added that attracting bigger investment will lead to multiplier effect that will stimulate other investments.